How To Clean A Litter Box And Keep It Odor Free!

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and Litter Genie, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #petparents

Life in our new house is WAY different from life in the old apartment! JM and I are getting used to it, but our kitties, Puck and Finnegan, are a little more wary. There are definitely some things they love: they have tons more space to explore, they have claimed all the radiators as napping places, they love staring out the windows and watching the world go by. But they’re a little unsure about the stairs (they kinda waddle down them, it’s adorable!), and they are definitely not sure about the basement. They’re getting used to it now, but for a while there they howled and meowed every single time they went down there!

I, on the other hand, LOVE having a basement! It’s a great place to store stuff, we have our own washing machine and dryer down there, and it’s the perfect place to put the kitties’ litter box to keep it out of the way! Our old apartment was so small there wasn’t really any “out of the way” space, so their litter box went in a closet in the living room. We put down a rubber garage floor mat to help contain the litter they tracked out of the box, and it worked great, but it still seemed to get everywhere. So I’m thrilled that we can put the litter box downstairs, out of the way, where a little bit of litter on the floor won’t bother anyone!

However, having the litter in the basement presented us with new problems. It’s so out of the way it’s actually a hassle to empty the litter box every day and carry the baggies all the way upstairs, through the house, outside, through the detached garage, and into the trash cans. Also, the laundry is in the basement, so the litter box smell was starting to be a problem for our freshly cleaned clothes. But I found the perfect solution at Target the other day: the Litter Genie!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free! It's easier than you think!

How To Clean A Litter Box (and keep it odor free!)

The Litter Genie is basically a mini trash can specifically designed to hold used litter and keep the odors locked in, and boy does it work wonders! I’m seriously loving this thing!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

I set it up in the basement right next to the litter box, and now all I have to do is scoop the litter every day like normal, but instead of scooping it into a bag, and I just scoop it right into the Litter Genie. Then when I’m done I can just pull the handle out to let the used litter fall down into the lower half of the bin and release the handle to lock it down there. The used litter and the smells are totally contained, the litter box is clean, and I don’t have to carry bags of litter around every day!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

Even Finnegan thinks it’s nifty!

With two cats, the bottom half gets full after 1-2 weeks, so I just open the container, remove the bag of used litter, take it out to the garbage, and start all over again! The basement is totally free of icky litter box smells, and I can clean the litter box daily without too much hassle. Perfect!

If you want your own Litter Genie, you can find them at Target for under $15! Plus here’s a $3 off coupon for you! And check out Litter Genie on Facebook and Twitter for the latest on clean litter boxes!

JM thinks it’s weird how much I love this thing, but it’s just so useful! It saves me tons of time, which means I can finish getting unpacked into this new house, and the kitties can keep exploring the basement!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

And finding the warmest, sunniest places to sleep!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

How to clean a litter box and keep it odor free!

How do you deal with your litter box? Any brilliant litter box tips?!

Disclosure: I received compensation from Pollinate Media and Target in exchange for my honest discussion of this product. But I cannot even tell you how awesome this thing is and how much easier it makes it to keep the litter box clean! All opinions in this post are 100% my own. I would never write a post about something I didn’t think was useful or interesting for you guys, and Practically Functional will only publish sponsored posts for companies or products I love and believe in! 🙂


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Jessi Wohlwend

I believe that anyone can do crafts and DIY projects, regardless of skill or experience. I love sharing simple craft ideas, step by step DIY project tutorials, cleaning hacks, and other tips and tricks all with one goal in mind: giving you the tools you need to “do it yourself”, complete fun projects, and make awesome things!

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Reader Interactions

  1. Melissa Allen says

    7 years ago

    I haven’t wanted to invest in the Genie, so I use a lb silver step lid waste can and a dual layer of plastic grocery bag tucked into the removable plastic liner. Every ounce of days we tie off the bags and toss to into the garbage.

  2. Linda says

    9 years ago

    I had never heard of the Litter Genie until one was offered on Freecycle. I love it, so much I got another (new) one at Goodwill for $2 when I saw it. I plan to give one to my daughter for her cats. If I forget to buy refills (always looking for them on sale), I take the empty bag holder and stuff plastic kitchen size bags into it. It takes very little time if you use a table knife to get the bag in the holder. This is more of an emergency fix.

  3. Corinne from Florida says

    9 years ago

    Also, a few months ago I started using OdoBan, which is a concentrated disinfectant and deodorizer to help get rid of smells and bacteria associated with litter boxes and pet “accidents” and love it! It is not “natural,” being a blend of chemicals, but is nontoxic. (It is a concentrate, with different strengths for different uses). I put a few ounces in a 32 oz spray bottle and fill with water and use to disinfect the box, floor, litter mat, etc. and I spritz it in the air as well. You can also add it to the rinse cycle of laundry. It says it is a “eucalyptus” fragrance, but I just think it smells clean. They have it on Amazon but I got it cheaper at Home Depot, less than $10/gallon. It would be good for cigarette smokers too, probably. It’s not labelled as a cleaner, but it does clean. I also noticed it kills algae on wood decks (slowly) and flea eggs as well; I was having a problem with both of these until I started cleaning the floors and porch with this stuff! (And was using Frontline and Advantage Plus regularly.) Don’t forget to disinfect your door handles and hands after you carry your used litter bag out to the trash!

  4. Tammy says

    10 years ago

    I’m not sure if i should be disgusted or not. I live in Australia and had never heard of the Cat Genie, thought it was an absolutely fantastic idea, so i went looking the Oz sites for one. Now i know that we pay more for things but seriously, they were anything from $77 to $200 and no that is not a misprint. A refill $28. I don’t even know how much the postage was, I wasn’t game to look. Maybe i should see how much it would cost to ship one from America.

  5. Jillian Leigh says

    10 years ago

    oh did I mention the cat attract litter controls odor amazingly!! it smells earthy when you get up close to it.

  6. Jillian Leigh says

    10 years ago

    well that’s cool.. i never heard of that before!! I literally just clean it twice a day. in the morning and before bed. sometimes once a day. but our litter box is in the bathroom. so that’s must. I use this litter called “cat attract” .. and I will NEVER EVER go back to another litter again. virtually no dust and no “cat box scent” .. we had a problem with the dust and needed a dust free litter. also amazing is when my cat come cuddling after using the box, I don’t smell litter.

    my cat is big, and I just cut a hole in the top of a medium size tote. its perfect. sells cat attract. I got 40 pound back for $24 bucks. petsmart sells it i think, too. or one of those “pet” supply stores… its called petsmart I think? I just checked the price on …. they raised the price to $26… but I got it for $24.

    my mom has 3 cats. her boxes are in the basement. she has several boxes and it smells like litter. i hate it. that “litter scent” … not the poop litter…just the “fresh scent” ..its overwhelming and I can’t take it. which is why I was amazed to find cat attract. plus our rescue needed a little encouragement to use his box. they say it’s 100% guaranteed no accidents. Boone had one mishap after we switched litters. I realized he likes a lot of litter in his box. he digs deep. not that “thinnish” layer I usually do with other cats.

    anyway, i’m going to look up this genie!!

  7. The Smelly Lady says

    10 years ago

    We recently moved into a small house (from a big one) and I have the litter box under the kitchen sink. I clean it twice a day and spray the area with lysol. It seems to work great so far. As for litter, I get what is on sale or the green jug from Family Dollar.

  8. keri @ shaken together says

    10 years ago

    This is genius! Cleaning the cat box is Cam’s job and he absolutely loathes it. This will make it SO much easier. This is 100% on my list for Target!

    • Jessi Wohlwend says

      10 years ago

      I hear ya on that! It used to be JM’s job to clean the litter box, but now that we have this thing I totally don’t mind doing it!

  9. Chandra says

    10 years ago

    Perfect use for the Genie. Maintaining pet odor is a big sell for me. I’m a new kitty (2) momma and although I don’t have the trek back and forth to a basement, I still abhor the whole scooping/cleaning process. Thanks! ….now, how about some insight on cat litter. *sigh* After seven months I’m still searching for one that works. 🙂

    • Jessi Wohlwend says

      10 years ago

      I really love the litter we use! It’s Tidy Cats Scoop Instant Action for multiple cats and it works really great! It clumps well without sticking to the sides of the litter box, which was a huge problem with our last litter. Plus it really doesn’t smell at all, and there’s very little dust when you pour it or scoop it. I definitely recommend it!

    • Dawn says

      8 years ago

      We also use Tidy Cats litter. We like the multiple cats kind also, but I really like the kind with Glade in it (it has a silver lid). It actually smells really good, but doesn’t seem to deter the cats from using it.

      I, too, have the litter pan in the basement. My husband suggested something like this, but I insisted we didn’t need it (because I’m “frugal” and didn’t want to spend the money on it), but I think he’ll be happy to hear you have helped in changing my mind! I think I have to have one of these! Especially because this is our first Michigan winter with the cats, and I don’t like the idea of going outside every day in snow to throw the used litter out! Thank you for your helpful, honest review 🙂

  10. Katie says

    10 years ago


    That is all.

    • Jessi Wohlwend says

      10 years ago

      Lol Katie! I hear you though, it was a huge bummer not to have one in our apartment, and I’m loving having it now for dirty messes! No more washing out the litter box in the bathtub!

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